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Electron microscopes have certain advantages over optical (light) microscopes. The biggest advantage is that they have a higher resolution and are therefore also able of a higher magnification (up to 2 million times). Light microscopes can show a useful magnification only up to 1000-2000 times. The smaller the object we want to study, the shorter the wavelength and the higher the energy of the probe we need to use. Electrons in an electron microscope have shorter wavelengths than visible light, which is why they can resolve smaller things. Visible light has wavelengths ranging from about 7 x 10 (to the power -7) metres for red to about 4 x 10 (to the power-7) metres for violet. Electrons in a typical electron microscope have wavelengths measured in picometres. One picometre is 10-12 of a metre, meaning that electron microscopes can resolve things hundreds of thousands of times smaller than optical microscopes.